The Good Steward

Contemplative Knitting: Knit Your Way to a More Spiritual Life

February 2021

Chances are that even if you aren’t a knitter, you know one. In its most recent survey, The Association for Creative Industries found that nearly 30 million Americans name knitting as a hobby.

Many knitters know a secret. It’s not just about production; knitting can be meditative—and even spiritual. And that’s no yarn! Julie Cicora, author of the upcoming book Contemplative Knitting, which can now be pre-ordered from Church Publishing Incorporated, says people can experience calming effects from knitting by dedicating time to their craft each day.

Cicora’s book guides both novices and veterans through the process of converting knitting into a spiritual discipline. An Episcopal priest and avid knitter, she penned Contemplative Knitting because she knew parishioners who started to incorporate a spiritual practice into their frenetic lives, only to become discouraged and give up. The answer to that common problem, she says, could be as simple as getting into the habit of picking up a ball of yarn and knitting needles each day.

Engage in Spirituality

Part One of the three-part book examines the ways knitting can produce creative joy while encouraging the knitter to look inwards. Cicora discusses how the act of repeatedly engaging in prayer can be connected with a consistent knitting practice.

Part Two looks at how to develop and sustain a spiritual knitting habit.

In Part Three, Cicora suggests a number of projects to deepen the spiritual nature of knitting. For example, turning a yarn stash into a personal reflection about possessions, or knitting one inch per day of a 40-inch cowl during Lent.

“The purpose is not to knit a beautiful cowl,” she writes. Instead, “This knitting project is a visual way to track your prayer time.”

Contemplative Knitting is ideal for knitters at any skill level who want to turn their creativity into a gateway to a more active spiritual life.